Medal of Honor Recipient to Speak at Military Ball
Katie L. Martin
The Medal of Honor is the United States' highest award for military valor in action. Riverside is honored to have National Medal of Honor recipient, David Bellavia, as the guest speaker for the Military Ball on April 22, 2023.
Bellavia is the first and only living Iraq veteran to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor. He began his military career in 1999 when he enlisted in the U.S. Army. Following the attacks on 9/11, Bellavia was deployed to Kosovo in 2003 and was later sent to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. While in Iraq, Bellavia acted as squad leader in support of Operation Phantom Fury in Fallujah, Iraq, where he showed tremendous courage in protecting his unit.
Bellavia not only received the Medal of Honor, but also the Bronze Star, the National Defense Service Medal, Kosovo Campaign Medal with Bronze Service Star, New York State Conspicuous Service Cross, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the NATO Medal. In 2005, he was inducted into the New York State Veterans Hall of Fame.
Riverside cadets and their guests can look forward to hearing Bellavia’s firsthand account of his experience in Iraq and the value of leadership and service above self.